Tailgate Pick ‘Em Week 7 Predictions Including Texas vs Oklahoma

Texas vs Oklahoma
DALLAS, TX - OCTOBER 06: CeeDee Lamb #2 of the Oklahoma Sooners carries the ball against Caden Sterns #7 of the Texas Longhorns in the first half of the 2018 AT&T Red River Showdown at Cotton Bowl on October 6, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

Steen Kirby, John Bava, and Yesh Ginsburg offer their predictions for a slate of huge college football matchups this week including Texas vs Oklahoma in the Red River Rivalry, and Florida vs LSU in an SEC showdown.

#11 Texas vs #6 Oklahoma (Saturday in Dallas, TX)
Line: Oklahoma by 10.5

Steen: Rivalry games always matter, but this one means more as it could decide the BIG 12’s best playoff contender. Texas came up short against LSU but has rebounded nicely and can’t be written off. Oklahoma meanwhile hasn’t been challenged for a full four quarters this season. The Sooners are really good though, and should rise up in their first full game performance to notch a win here on the back of an offensive show. Oklahoma 45, Texas 35

John: Jalen Hurts is playing like a quarterback capable of giving Oklahoma its third consecutive Heisman Trophy winner. He currently leads the nation in passing efficiency and is one of just five signal-callers completing over 75 percent of his passes. This week, he gets his first taste of the Red River Rivalry against a Texas team continuing its path towards renewed relevance in the Big XII. The problem is they’re the conference’s worst team when it comes to defending the pass this year. And their secondary comes into this game a bit banged up. That’s good news for Hurts and the Sooners. Oklahoma 44, Texas 27

Yesh: It’s hard to forget about what happened last year, but it’s also hard to pick against Oklahoma. The Sooners’ defense is better than in the past, and Texas doesn’t look as strong as it did last year, especially on defense. If LSU carved up the Longhorns, what will Oklahoma do? Oklahoma 56, Texas 35

USC at #9 Notre Dame (Saturday in Notre Dame, IN)
Line: Notre Dame by 11

Steen: Already sporting a loss, Notre Dame can’t afford to lose this game against a talented but inconsistent USC team. Playing at home the Irish should have an advantage. Notre Dame has come to play in all of their games this season, the same can’t be said for USC. I don’t trust the Trojans and thus I expect ND to have a big day. Notre Dame 35, USC 14

John: This famous intersectional rivalry has certainly swayed in favor of Notre Dame in recent years. In the 10 meetings with USC between 2002-11, they managed just a single win. Since then, they’re 5-2 against the Trojans and are looking for their third-straight win in the series when the two face off in South Bend this weekend. Expectations are high they can get it done with a prolific offense led by quarterback Ian Book and a defense that’s one of just 14 in FBS which gives up fewer than 15 points per game. Yes, the Trojans are getting Kedon Slovis back at quarterback. But the Irish will prove too tough a challenge under the lights of Notre Dame Stadium. Notre Dame 34, Southern Cal 20

Yesh: USC is really good and has a lot of talent. Notre Dame showed its potential against Georgia, but it will give up some big plays to an elite Trojans receiving corps. The Irish will win, but the line is too high. Notre Dame 28, USC 24

#10 Penn State at #17 Iowa (Saturday in Iowa City, IA)
Line: Penn State by 3.5

Steen: Penn State can score, and after Iowa stalled against a beatable Michigan team last week, this game looks like a mismatch. The Iowa defense is very good, but questions about the offense are serious enough that this line seems quite low. Penn State should win, and comfortably. Penn State 24, Iowa 10

John: Penn State comes into this Big Ten clash as one of the quieter undefeated teams in college football. But they can certainly make some noise if they can knock off Iowa on the road. Both teams are incredibly impressive defensively as each of them is top three nationally in points allowed. The edge at quarterback goes to the Nittany Lions as Sean Clifford currently leads the Big Ten in passing yardage per game with his 12 touchdowns third among the conference’s signal-callers. Much like the Hawkeyes’ 10-3 loss to Michigan last week, the play on the field Saturday should hearken back to old school Big Ten football. Penn State 17, Iowa 10

Yesh: I saw what Wisconsin did to Michigan. I saw how Michigan contained Iowa. I have a hard time believing that Penn State can’t do the exact same thing. Iowa will slow the game down so it’s not embarrassing, but this won’t be close. Penn State 28, Iowa 10

#7 Florida at #5 LSU (Saturday in Baton Rouge, LA)
Line: LSU by 13.5

Steen: LSU’s Joe Burrow has put up Heisman caliber numbers so far, powering the LSU offense to its best performance in years. The Tigers have a great win against Texas already on their resume, and are now looking to beat the undefeated Gators at home to ensure they will be relevant in the SEC late into the season. Florida has looked shaky at times but comes off a tough win against a quality Auburn team and has momentum. The Florida defense will slow Burrow, but I don’t think their offense has enough juice to win this game. LSU 27, Florida 17

John: It’s going to be loud and raucous at Tiger Stadium during this highly anticipated meeting between SEC unbeatens. The edge at quarterback clearly goes to the Tigers as Joe Burrow is putting up a Heisman-caliber season and Kyle Trask having been forced to come in for Feleipe Franks who’s done for the year. But the Gators defense is tough to score on as they’re the only SEC unit giving up under 10 points per game. So while I expect LSU to defend home turf, the Gators should keep it closer than what Vegas expects. LSU 31, Florida 23

Yesh: Florida just shut down Auburn in impressive fashion. I’m not at all sold on the Gators offense, but the defense is legit. Joe Burrow will put up yards, but the Gators will get the stops they need to keep this game tight late. LSU 28, Florida 20

Hawai’i at #14 Boise State (Saturday in Boise, ID)
Line: Boise State by 12.5

Steen: Hawai’i may not win, but they will put up a fight in this one as their 4-1 record is no fluke. The rested Bows travel to Boise having scored 30+ in all of their wins this season, while undefeated Boise State is again dreaming of crashing the power 5 conference party at year’s end. Boise State’s defense should be enough to check Hawai’i at home, but this will be a 4th quarter game. Boise State 38, Hawai’i 31

John: Hawai’i proved last week that cold weather doesn’t affect them as they pasted Nevada 54-3 in Reno. They have another challenge in such conditions in Week 7 as they take on 14th-ranked Boise State on the blue turf with temperatures expected to be in the mid-30s. Two of the Mountain West’s top quarterbacks will be on display as the Warriors’ Cole McDonald and the Broncos’ Hank Bachmeier rank one-two respectively in passing yards per game. But Boise’s stout pass defense should see them through on their quest towards returning to a big-time bowl game. Boise State 38, Hawai’i 20

Yesh: Boise State is one of the few teams that the oddsmakers get to overestimate. The Broncos are undefeated and get tons of casual bets from people who go off record and name recognition. Hawaii is legit, and the Warriors have impressed in every one of their games so far, except against Washington. Expect a tight one here, if not an outright upset. Hawaii 42, Boise State 38

 

Texas vs Oklahoma Main Photo:

DALLAS, TX – OCTOBER 06: CeeDee Lamb #2 of the Oklahoma Sooners carries the ball against Caden Sterns #7 of the Texas Longhorns in the first half of the 2018 AT&T Red River Showdown at Cotton Bowl on October 6, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

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